A radical take on improving peoples’ physical and environmental security...
Many of the perspectives put forward by the powerful and passionate voices gracing Radio New Internationalistthis year have the capacity to move the world. The move may be to a better place, fundamentally shifting our attitudes towards a more sustainable life. Or the move may be a step down life’s ladder leading us to a more dangerous destiny. Whether to the left or the right all of these views reveal other ways of thinking about the overall direction the world is turning, offering a veritable smorgasbord of ideas and developments to feed into our own lives. Today the Radio New Internationalist team serves up some of this year’s best:
• We start with security – the ability of people to feel free from fear of attack. The war on terror has moved the world into greater fear of personal danger. British slam poet Danny Chivers moves us out of that space with a humorous assessment of the risk of being killed in today’s Western World.
• Turning to some true terrorists, government-backed military forces across the world are at best, arresting and torturing and at worst, killing and raping their own citizens – people who challenge the boundaries of government power. Labour rights advocate Dr Yang Jianli describes the treatment that he received as one of thousands of political prisoners in China’s jail.
• Talking of terror, 50 of the world’s 27,000 nuclear weapons have the capacity to kill an amazing 200 million people. Yet despite active campaigns involving millions of people, five decades after the first nuclear bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in Japan, an international convention to ban the bomb has still not been successfully negotiated. But things are about to change, as New Internationalist co-editor Jess Worth and Felicity Hill from the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom report.
• With environmental security endangered by climate change, what should the world’s response be? Professor Walter Kälin, Representative of the Secretary-General on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons takes us through some options.
• Other international campaigns are attempting to combat climate change by stopping carbon emissions at their source. Internationalist co-editor Vanessa Baird and Carlos Larrea – one of Ecuador’s leading economists – explain the Yasuní proposal to keep Ecuador’s oil in the ground.
• High on the health security list is HIV, which kills more people than all world wars and conflict – 1.2 million in 2007. While the United Nations estimate that over 33 million people were living with HIV/AIDS last year, most of these can’t afford the drug treatments to contain it.
• Humanitarian and diplomat, Stephen Lewis– co-director of AIDS-Free World – and Dr André de Mello e Souza from the Pontifíca Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro outline which countries have by necessity by-passed pharmaceutical patents to offer their people the medication that they need.
Today’s CD selection is Dig Dig performed by Bob Brozman and René Lacaille, which showcases the African, Asian and Indian influence on the island of La Réunion. It’s a passionate, joyous, sexy and rhythmic romp – one of this program's favourites CD.